Signs of Spring: early plants and flowers available.

The warmer, brighter weather means there are now some early flowers starting to bloom and some pots of bulbs and hardy annuals ready to be planted out. There are also some modules of broad beans. Perennials will be following soon. Also, take a look at the Seed page – new seeds being added regularly.

Please send any orders to the email below and, if you live within 5 miles of Oxford, they can be delivered free to your door. (Minimum orders of £5.00). Payment can be arranged via BACS or cash/cheque.

thedevelopingplot@gmail.com

Flowers

One of last year’s Spring bouquets

It feels very cheering that there will be flowers ready to order this week. (Pre-orders for Mothers’ Day can also be made now). Narcissi, hellebores, anemones, tulips, Spring Snowflakes daffodils and Spring blossom will be some of flowers included in each jam jar/bunch/bouquet.

Jam jars of flowers start at £6.00

Wrapped Bouquets start from £12.00 to around £25.00 (larger bouquets available later in year)

The flowers are mainly grown in my garden and plot, but are supplemented for the next few weeks with other local and British flowers. Everything I grow is started and raised in peatfree compost and is free from insecticides.

Pots of Bulbs

Scilla Litardierei in 9cm pots with flower shoots just breaking the surface. A truly lovely miniature bulb with star shaped blue flowers. Ideal for containers or can be planted in ground to increase year on year. Grows to around 10cm. £1.50 a pot

Scilla bifolia in 9cm pots ready to be planted into pots, window boxes or into the garden. Their beautiful violet blue flower buds are just poking through and so will give interest for weeks to come. They will grow to about 15cm and if planted in the garden will naturalise. £1.50 a pot

Puschkinia Libanotica or Russian Snowdrop beautiful white flowers with a pale blue silvery blush. As with the scillas, this can be planted in containers or the garden now. The shoots are just breaking the surface giving a long time of interest. Likes well drained soil in full sun or partial shade and grows to around 20cm. £1.50 a pot

Anemone Blanda blue a 12cm terracotta pot filled with corms and the cheerful flowers are just breaking the surface. Would make a good gift. Can be planted in to the garden now in sun or partial shade or after flowering. Will naturalise and cheer up future Springs. Grows to around 15cm. £5.00 a pot

Rununculus in 9cm pots grown over Winter. These are quite tricky to grow, but once developed into a small plant, just need protecting from the weather. Can be planted 3 into a 15 litre container or into well drained soil which has sun. When flower buds show feed weekly with a liquid fertiliser such as tomorite or seaweed. Once flowered, wait until the foliage has died down and save corms for next Autumn or early Spring. Mixed colours £2.00 a pot

Hardy Annuals

All been hardened off and most have been outside for weeks and months and are ready to be planted out in the garden. They can all tolerate low temperatures, but might need some protection if the weather gets particularly fierce and cold. All are in 9cm pots.

Cerinthe Major

A lovely unfussy plant which gently and reliably self seeds. A pretty filler in the border and the vase, its attractive, purple bell-like flowers are a magnet for bees and other pollinators. It has silver grey/green leaves which often have a blue wash. It flowers early and long. Space plants 12″ apart. Enjoys sun, but flowers well in part shade too as well tolerates clay soil. Grown from seeds gathered from my plot. Plants have been hardened off and can be put in the garden now. £1.50 a pot

Homesown Fragrant Sweetpea mixed coloursall with great scent

These are grown from seeds saved from the plot from a selection of my favourite varieties chosen for their amazing scent and colour. The seedlings tolerate down to -5 so once they germinated, they were left outside to harden up. If the weather is particularly brutal, they might need a little protection. Prepare the soil to help water retention and plant out from start of March when weather is hospitable. Plant each pot around 8″ apart. Sweetpeas like to be well watered and prefer sun. They will need support to clamber up and regular picking to keep them flowering. They are the most generous of flowering annuals, but do need quite a lot of attention. I think it is worth it for the scent alone. £1.00 a pot

There are also named varieties ready now such as Hi Scent; the best scented sweetpea of all, Matacuna; Nimbus and Bristol. Pictures are in that order in slideshow above.

I am planting my sweetpeas out at the patch next week as the weather looks ideal (so far…). Again, £1.50 a pot.

And finally!

9cm pots of Aquadulce : 2 plants a pot for 50p grown from organic seed
Modules of Crimson flowered broad bean 25p each or 5 for £1. Beautiful eye catching flowers and delicious beans!